Active seniors, especially those who participate in some form of exercise on a daily basis, enjoy a variety of benefits. Older adults who enjoy 20-30 minutes of light exercise each day are able to reduce their risk for several health-related conditions, report a greater quality-of-life and may lead fuller, longer lives than those who do not. And at Home Care Assistance Sonoma County, we want seniors to know that striving to stay active well into their golden years may not be as difficult they think!
A common exercise barrier among seniors involves limited mobility or fears of falling. What many seniors may not know is that minimal exercise can actually help with both. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the older adult who takes a few minutes to walk each day is actively improving their balance and mobility and decreasing their overall risk for falls. The basic activity of walking can provide additional benefits when done with a partner, making the activity a social event and helping to promote mood and social ties.
Seniors that may have more significant issues with mobility can still participate in a daily exercise routine. Activities such as yoga or chair aerobics can be easily modified for seniors of varying abilities and can be done in the comfort of home under the supervision of a family member or professional caregiver. These simple types of exercises not only help seniors maintain as much functioning as possible, they play a role in decreasing negative feelings such as depression.
As a senior’s risk for chronic conditions increases with age, it isn’t surprising that age-related illness can inhibit a senior from enjoying exercise on a daily basis. For example, a senior with arthritis may view daily exercise as a painful experience or the senior with COPD may be afraid of worsening already severe breathing problems. However, studies show that starting an exercise plan as recommended by a health care professional can help those who suffer from chronic disease, lessening the effects and even improving some of the symptoms. The key lies in modified exercise programs which are tailored to each senior’s unique needs, abilities and preferences.
While daily exercise can have a positive impact on a senior’s quality of life, it does not mean that seniors should jump into an exercise program right away. If you or a loved one are interested in starting an exercise regimen, speak to your primary care physician. They can provide information about how to start and which exercises would be best to prevent injury and overexertion.
For more information about senior fitness or in-home care for seniors, visit our website at www.homecareassistancesonomacounty.com or contact a trained Care Manager directly at 707-843-4368 today.